When I was a little girl, my grandparents were very close to an incredibly glamourous couple, Mavis and Jerry.
Jerry was some financial bigwig in the oil industry.
Whenever I saw Mavis, I felt like I was around a movie star.
She was beautiful, always dripping in diamonds and in furs (this was pre-PETA days!).
They travelled to Europe a couple of times a year, the only people I grew up knowing who did that.
We saw them when they were in Laguna Beach, at their beautiful oceanfront house. They had a penthouse in New York, overlooking Central Park, and a chalet in Vail, the most stylish luxury ski resort in the States.
And then one day, Jerry had a heart attack and died. Instantly.
There was a will obviously, leaving everything to Mavis.
But there was a problem – where was everything?
See, in those pre-internet days there was no way of finding all the places Jerry had stashed his cash.
He’d left no written records of any of his bank accounts, even though he had told Mavis about them.
Turned out the places in New York and Vail were rented.
Mavis was left with the cash in the two accounts she had access to and what the beach house was worth.
She was in her mid-50’s, facing an uncertain future.
Now, Mavis was never going to end up homeless. But I know that there were discussions about missing millions that ended up being replaced by selling a lot of her jewellery.
Mavis’ life changed in a heartbeat. Or I guess it would be more accurate to say the cessation of a heartbeat.
I was around ten years old when this happened. A lot of it went over my head.
And voila - my money mindset foundation was formed.
It laid the groundwork for my belief that money is not trustworthy.
That it can disappear in the blink of an eye.
And often it’s someone you love who takes it away.
That you have no control over money.
All of which was reinforced during my late teens when I watched my mother steal all my grandparents’ money. It was so bad they ended up with two new mortgages on a house they’d lived in for almost 20 years.
It’s only in the last couple of years that I’ve learned anything about money mindset.
And picking apart what went on in my childhood has helped me understand my relationship with money.
I’ve always been one of those people who would look at their bank account the day before payday and wonder how I could spend the remaining money in the next 12 hours.
Hands up if you’ve done the same!
That would make you a fellow money avoider.
Our relationship with money is affected by so many things – our family, friends, society, work.
It’s no wonder that so many of us have a messed-up relationship with it.
And yes, that means you money hoarders out there as well!
A lot of work has helped me get past my money demons and I have a much healthier relationship with it.
Want some help getting a healthier mindset about money?
Book a discovery call with me and let's chat about how I can help you.